spatch: (Tom Baker - what)
Dear god there's a new LJ editor window thingy and since it doesn't look like the one that I've been using for nearly the past ten years, I HATE IT. I hope LJ doesn't pull a Google and end up forcing me to use the old one because well THAT'S JUST MEAN. IN ALL CAPS.

Well look what snuck up on us while we weren't looking: A new QI series A new cartoon called Gravity Falls New Doctor Who! I think this series has been one of the most hyped up in a while because of The Thing What Happens In Episode Five, which we shall not discuss here since A. while we know more or less what happens we don't yet know how, and B. if you do know how and explain it all, we will send this fine twenty-pound cat over to your house so he can pee all over your floor, Clarissa.

Spoilers below, etc. So here we are already at the third episode. )
spatch: (Tom Baker - what)
Variety is reporting that David Yates, director of the last few Harry Potter films (honestly, was I the only one who really thought Alfonso Cuaron did a great job?) is "teaming up" with the BBC to make Doctor Who a movie.

Yippee! Zowie! The Doctor who is not Peter Cushing and his companions on the big screen! Let's read the article together, you and I, and thrill to the exciting developments to come!
Yates, who directed the last four Potter films, told Daily Variety that he is about to start work on developing a "Doctor Who" movie with Jane Tranter, head of L.A.-based BBC Worldwide Prods.
Okay, Jane Tranter worked with Russell T. Davies on the New Who. I took a liking to her after reading Davies' production diaries, if only because she had the common sense to turn down some of Russell's more embarrassingly bad ideas. Onward and let's get to the good parts like MAYBE IF K-9 WILL BE IN IT! I LIKE K-9!
"We're looking at writers now. We're going to spend two to three years to get it right," he said. "It needs quite a radical transformation to take it into the bigger arena."
Well that's a bit of a comedown. I never like hearing that an established series needs a "radical" kind of anything. And Doctor Who doesn't. Want to make an exciting and fun Doctor Who movie? Get Moffat to write, get Matt Smith and anybody who's around after the Christmas special. (I have yet to watch the second half of this season, by the way, and I've studiously avoided spoilers so I don't know anything that's happened since Spring) Have them run around for two hours thwarting alien menaces in a solidly-crafted story, and you'll have some damn good sci-fi. People are going to want to see the characters they know and love.

Maybe I'm overreacting just a little bit. Maybe I'm taking "radical transformation" out of proportion. Maybe all Yates really wants to do is change the theme tune, you know, put some heavy bass under it or something. Or maybe he'll make the Cybermen glow orange. Let's see.
Yates made clear that his movie adaptation would not follow on from the current TV series, but would take a completely fresh approach to the material.

"Russell T. Davies and then Steven Moffat have done their own transformations, which were fantastic, but we have to put that aside and start from scratch," he said.



Now that's a pretty spectacular disappointment and specific to boot! Time was all someone had to do to irk the masses was say "Hey I'm making a movie of a favorite sci-fi/fantasy property" and we'd descend like howler monkeys (we are legion; we are hyperbolic) to cry "It won't be the same! It will suck!" More often than not we were vindicated. Hello, I, Robot. Other times really everyone was pleasantly surprised with how well it came out. Hello, Lord of the Rings. But David Yates here doesn't even set a "might not suck" bar. He simply kicks it to the ground with a Reboot implication. Yeah, don't think like he won't. Phrases like "completely fresh" and "start from scratch" are pretty damning.

Doctor Who is a British institution and beloved television show for decades, and there's one good reason why: It's constant even in the face of changes that would faze other television programs. Actors and actresses (including leads) come and go, show runners switch off, the TARDIS keeps looking different inside. It's a show all about change, but it's been constant in that change. It has built a robust universe with strong characters, recurring villains, and species who have been allowed to develop on their own as characters.

Doctor Who has become one grand epic story, and while some chapters have been better than others and okay, there might have been some slight fiddling with the canon, it's still an amazing work all around. A lot of really clever and talented people have worked hard on this story over the years and starting from scratch, doing away with their universe entirely, is an insult to their endeavors.

It seems to me that while Yates can cloak his intentions with "It's an artistic necessity! Honest!" what he really wants here is Michael Bay blockbuster grosses. Take a franchise that people have heard of, turn it into blow-up-real-good entertainment for the PG-13 demographic, then go swim in your Scrooge McDuck money bin. And there's nothing wrong with blow-up-real-good entertainment, but you don't have to ruin Doctor Who to do it.
spatch: (Bewitched)
1. Delta and the Bannermen, a Doctor Who serial from 1987 starring Sylvester McCoy as the Doctor and Bonnie Langford as Mel, the screamiest companion ever. And you were right, [ profile] stannate. It was pretty awful. Paradise Towers is goofy and bad, and so it gets a pass because you can laugh at it and feel like it's a guilty pleasure. But with this one, the "oh god, that's bad" overwhelmed the "so bad it's good" camp in a serious way. I tried to find things to like about it -- Stubby Kaye was in it, that was cool! But his role is completely useless! He and the guy with the Worst Southern American Accent Ever are part of this C story that contributes nothing to the main adventure at hand!

The girl playing the motorcyclist was rather cute! But... all she did was pine for a boy and ride around on the motorcycle, giving us the Doctor Who equivalent of Rock Climbing. Any time the episode needed padding, they just threw in a few more shots of everybody gaily riding about on their motorcycles. Eventually the group gets too large so they add a car to the parade. How fun! Mel even waves hello to cows from a sidecar. Yes. SHE WAVES HELLO TO COWS. They're hurriedly escaping from vicious, cold-blooded warrior types and seeking a safe spot, riding through the Welsh countryside, and Mel's WAVING HELLO TO FREAKING COWS. She didn't even call them on her side, so I called them from my side, and that means Mel lost all her cows.

But I absolutely lost it when we got to the baby painted green. (For those of you without a shred of context, yes, all this is entirely true, including the green baby. And the Rock Climbing motorcycle riding. DEEP HURTING. DEEEEEP HURTING.)

2. This week's episode of the Venture Bros. Now there's some quality Scooby-Doo style adventuring gone horribly awry. HORRIBLY SEXY AWRY! Was this episode written after six months at sea? My god. It was like Brock fighting Molotov Cocktease times three. I wonder how many concessions Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer had to make to the Cartoon Network Standards & Practices department (or whatever they're called) in order to get this one approved. I wonder how many bits of other episodes they had to rein in to make the deal. Or perhaps they did the ol' trick of including much, much, much more Verboten material to make the stuff they eventually got away with seem tame in comparison. I don't know. There's parts in this episode that you won't be able to unsee. And I suspect the Rule 34 guys are going absolutely apeshit right about now.

Now it's time to pretend to pass out for a few hours. Wish us luck. The heat is oppressively heat-y.
spatch: (Default)
I got a very nice phone call a few weeks back breaking the news to me that Stephen Moffat was stepping up as Doctor Who's show runner once Rusty Davies finally makes his step down. The call was made to me because the caller said of all the people she knew to make this announcement to, she wanted me to know if only to see what I'd eventually write. Then, of course, I didn't write, because it's been dang hard recently trying to actually sit down and type make words on screen without some form of interruption or distraction.

But Moffat taking over Davies' position? This can only be a good thing. This can only be a damned good thing. Even if, in four years' time, we're sitting around complaining of yet another formulaic Moffat script for Whoever-The-Doctor-Is-By-Then, the changeover will still have been a good and welcome one. I mean, at least Mr. M's formulaic tendencies don't run towards flatulent aliens camping it up, one-dimensional supporting characters, endless shots of crowds running outside and pointing at the imminent Threat Of The Week (or hugging with a hoorah once the threat has been neutralized) and "DO YU LIEK ME CHECK ONE [ ] YES [ ] NO [ ] OH GOD ANGST ANGST ANGST" soap opera bushwah.

Case in point: The most recent two-parter involving The Library (with capitals, yes). I'll say right off the bat this is good stuff, man, this is really good stuff. The second part was amazingly well done, and turned many conventions on their ear, conventions which I'd gotten quite tired of. I mean, let's compare what would have happened to this story had Russell T. Davies written it.

Delve? Let's. )
spatch: (K9)
Another week, another Doctor Who episode. I was surprised to find that I liked this one more than I should have. I'm not exactly sure why.

Let's delve, shall we? )
spatch: (Corner Gas - NO)
Just saw this week's Doctor Who and you know, the episode was decent, all things considered, it had its moments, had some instances of human beings actually acting human, didn't feature any gratutitous kissing (at least, not involving Ten)...

...and then I saw the previews for next week before turning it off.

Oh god.

Oh god.


I don't believe I've hollered "WHAT?! WHAT?! WHAT?! NO!!" at my televised media display screen before with quite the fervor as I just did, and that includes the response to the concrete slab-fucker scene from a few seasons ago.

There's only one way this little premise could work and if what we see next week is not that way, I fear next week I will be hollering "RUSSELL T. DAVIES YOU ARE DEAD TO ME, DO YOU HEAR ME? OOPS NO, YOU CAN'T, BECAUSE YOU ARE DEAD TO ME."

spatch: (Doctor Who - Tardis Door)
Paging Mr. Davies, Mr. Russell T. Davies, your mommy issues are on Line 1, Mr. Davies, please pick up Line 1, thank you.
spatch: (Default)
In my previous Doctor Who post, [ profile] nathanw just commented:
We're 3 for 3 of season finales with nigh-infinite armies of hostile robots. Keep your eyes open for next year's robots of choice.
Yes! How astute! Rusty has demonstrated that he can indeed write cliffhangers that involve a nigh-infinite army of hostile robots.

What else can Rusty write?
  1. Humongous crowds looking up at things in awe and surprise
  2. Slightly less-humongous crowds running and screaming in terror as shit blows up around them (slightly less because we're on a budget, don't you know)
  3. Campy villians who love to prance about and cackle maniacally
  4. Touching montages of small clusters of people, friends or families, all huddled around their individual television sets or monitors, watching and waiting
  5. Touching montages of the same clusters of people happily embracing or otherwise celebrating survival of some sort
    Though we will concede Rusty a small creative victory for writing one scene in which those small clusters of people get zotted out of existence instead. But that's a rare occurrence.
All right, but what can't Rusty write?
  1. Women
  2. Resolutions
  3. Well.
This concludes the lesson for today. This may be on the test.
spatch: (Bob & Doug MacKenzie - Fleshy Headed Mut)
Underneath this cut, besides our usual Doctor Who snarkiness, please find a very special screenshot, apparently an outtake from one of the climactic moments of this current series' finale. I believe [ profile] fourcoffees and [ profile] violetisblue have also seen it, and can confirm its authenticity.

spatch: (Bob & Doug MacKenzie - Fleshy Headed Mut)
Would someone be so kind as to go back to "Alias Smith & Jones" and see if there was any sound effect playing when Martha Jones was trying to listen to Mr. Smith's heart?

Just wondering.

Tomorrow we may have a post-mortem.
spatch: (K9)
I kept talking to the TV. And the cat. The TV does more when you talk to it than the cat.

spatch: (K9)
If just ten seconds had been snipped from "Human Nature" it'd be in the running for the Best Freakin' Episode of the "New" Doctor Who So Far.

And I bet you can guess which ten seconds I'm referring to. can't guarantee spoiler-free comments, btw.
spatch: (K9)
I am SO not going to talk about Evolution of the Daleks because honestly if I could go to New New New New New New New New York and get one of them Forget patches, I'd do so in a heartbeat. Ah, sweet bliss! Goodbye six-foot-three pink fleshy one-eyed monster with poorly-wriggling tentacles, hello reclaimed memory space that could be used for, oh, I don't know, memorizing UPC numbers! This bottle of chocolate milk is 75457 71100. Remember that. I know I am! Next time I think 75457 71100, I'm gonna think delicious chocolate milk!

spatch: (K9)
I have nothing else in the world to write about at this point, so I'm gonna write more about that dandy Doctor Who episode.

Those who haven't seen it yet and want to avoid spoilers, here's five dollahs. Run down to the packy and get us some beah. )
spatch: (K9)
To: Mr. Russell T. Davies
From: Mr. D. Spatchel, Esq.
Re: Love & Monsters
Just watched Gridlock.
All is forgiven.

spatch: (K9)
So I put the Mighty Spatchel Art Players together and we are now proud to present our spoiler-filled version (so don't look if you haven't seen the latest Season 3 episode!) of

spatch: (K9)
Oh, Doctor Who is here! Doctor Who is here! Hurray, hurray, Doctor Who is gonna fix it! Let's have a spoiler-FILLED almost-snarky talk about the first episode of S3! Which I liked! Hurray!

Hello, I'm David Tennant, and this is my hair. )


spatch: (Default)

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